Belief and Settledness

Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy (forthcoming)
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Abstract

This paper elucidates the sense in which belief is a question-settling attitude. In her recent work, Jane Friedman suggests that we understand the settledness of belief in terms of a normative principle about belief and inquiry: one ought not inquire into a question and believe the answer to the question at the same time. On the basis of the distinction between dispositional and occurrent belief, I argue against Friedman that there is no principle linking belief and inquiry that is both plausible and normative: on the dispositional reading of ‘belief’, such a principle is implausible; on the occurrent reading of ‘belief’, such a principle is not normative. I argue instead that the settledness should be understood as a descriptive relation between occurrent belief and inquiry: one cannot inquire into whether p while at the same time occurrently believing that p.

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Wooram Lee
Seoul National University

Citations of this work

Norms of Inquiry.Eliran Haziza - 2023 - Philosophy Compass 18 (12):e12952.
John Cook Wilson on the indefinability of knowledge.Guy Longworth & Simon Bastian Wimmer - 2022 - European Journal of Philosophy 30 (4):1547-1564.

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